Kyrie Irving scored six of his team-high 31 points during a fourth-quarter spurt that allowed the Boston Celtics to build a lead they were able to retain en route to a 126-120 victory over the visiting Sacramento Kings on Thursday night.
After trailing for much of the first three quarters, the Celtics led just 104-103 following a Willie Cauley-Stein dunk for Sacramento with 6:20 to go.
Irving countered immediately with a floater and, after a three-point play by Marcus Morris, added two jumpers in a 9-0 flurry that opened a 113-103 advantage with 4:33 remaining.
The Kings got no closer than five after that.
Irving wound up with his second career triple-double, complementing his 31 points with 10 rebounds and a game-high 12 assists.
His only previous triple-double came for Cleveland against Utah in February 2014.
Morris had a 21-point, 13-rebound double-double for Boston, which beat Sacramento at home for the 11th straight time dating to January 2007.
Jaylen Brown added 22 points for the Celtics, while Jayson Tatum had 15, Al Horford 12 and Gordon Hayward 10.
The Celtics shot 50.5 percent from the field for the game.
Sacramento’s Buddy Hield led all scorers with 34 points, connecting on 6 of 10 3-point attempts.
His Kings teammates, however, made just 5 of 24 3-point shots.
Cauley-Stein recorded a 10-point, 13-rebound double-double for the Kings, who lost their second straight and fell below .500 (33-34) for the first time since Jan. 8.
De’Aaron Fox had 19 points, seven rebounds, nine assists and three steals for Sacramento, while Harrison Barnes added 20 points and Marvin Bagley III 14 in his return from a knee injury.
The Kings lost despite also shooting 50.5 percent from the field.
The Celtics rallied to take the lead in the third period after trailing by as many as 17 points in the first half.
Boston overcame the first-half deficit by the second minute of the third quarter, going up 65-64 on a shot by Morris.
But the Kings immediately countered with four consecutive 3-pointers, three by Hield, to reclaim an 11-point advantage.
The Celtics then rallied again, this time going ahead on a Brown 3-pointer with 55.4 seconds remaining in the third quarter.
Boston led 93-91 after three quarters.
—Field Level Media